The Walking Dead Zombie Round-Up: Clear
It’s Monday morning, so that can only mean the Evil Lair is still standing after our normal Sunday night Zombie fest! Welcome Evil Geeks, to another edition of Zombie Round-Up! Your favorite day-after break down of the best show on TV. Last week found Andrea trying to reach out to her former companions at the prison and possibly thinking about killing the Governor in his sleep! Did he make it?!?! Last week also saw Rick possibly coming back to reality, does his sanity hold up this week?!?! Let’s find out, shall we?
With last week’s nail-biting ending featuring a naked Andrea standing over a sleeping Governor, while holding a knife and hesitantly pondering her next move, I’ll bet you thought this week would pick right up with that and address Andrea’s new relationship dynamic with her cycloptic sweetheart, right? Nope, you couldn’t be more wrong! This weeks episode was a one-off, taking place away from the burgeoning war between the prison and Woodbury, featuring Rick, Carl, and Michonne on a road trip to collect supplies for the prison. Specifically, they are planning on hitting up the weapons locker at Rick’s old police station in an effort to boost their arms supplies ahead of the coming battle with the Governor. Normally when a series does a stand-alone tale like this in the middle of a high stakes situation, such as the one with Woodbury, it would send me into a frothing fanboy rage. My thinking on the situation being “Why break away from the heart of the story and lose the momentum that you’ve built up to this point?” However, I liked tonight’s aside mainly because it’s chock full of cautionary tales for Rick, who’s desperately in need of being set on the right path. Rick needs to get his shit together, stop being crazy, and be the leader of the prison people. Tonight’s episode reminds him of a few things he may have lost sight of after all the recent chaos in his life.
When the survivors reach the Grimes Family’s old stomping ground, they’re fired upon by a masked stranger. This being the apocalypse and not the Old West, instead of the Lone Ranger, the masked man turns out to be Morgan, the guy who saved Rick’s ass way back in the first episode of the show. It’s Carl who actually takes down Morgan before the group knew who he was, by sneaking up and shooting him in the chest. Luckily Morgan is wearing body armor so he isn’t killed, just knocked unconscious. Since Rick last saw Morgan, things haven’t exactly gone good for Morgan and he’s become a walking, talking cautionary tale for Rick. When he and Rick first met, Morgan had a son named Duane. You may have noticed that I used the past-tense indicative term “had” in reference to Morgan’s child possession status. That’s because after Morgan failed to kill his zombified wife, she eventually made a quick snack of her son when Morgan let his guard down. Since then, Morgan’s been drifting steadily into insanity, all while amassing a massive stockpile of guns. Morgan is a mirror reflection of Rick and also a reminder to Rick of what he could become if he continues being the cold, unreasonable person he’s been recently. Morgan has completely lost trust of all outsiders and has become totally isolated because of his obsession with security. Contact with others is what keeps someone grounded throughout a tragedy and because he’s been without that anchor, Morgan has lost his mind. Seeing Morgan in this state helps Rick realize that he does need to be open to accepting new people and more importantly he needs to be able to ask other people for help in hard times.
If Morgan is the anti-Rick, Duane is similarly the anti-Carl. Both children are faced with the horror of having to shoot their mother, but Carl was able to go through with the deed (presumably, since we never actually saw him do it) while Duane was not. Duane let his emotions get the better of him by not shooting his mother when he had her in his sights and because of that he’s dead. Carl on the other hand , is still alive because he’s increasingly becoming more of a soldier and a less emotional person all around… or is he? Upon seeing a map of the town in Morgan’s booby-trapped hideout, Carl plans a mission to retrieve a photo of Rick, Lori, and himself before the zombies came, from the wall of a local restaurant. He wants to bring the picture back to Judith, so she’ll know what her mom looked like when she grows up. Oh Carl you silly child, she’s never going to grow up. At least not in the comic anyway. Carl and Michonne head out by themselves (See, Rick’s trusting people already, he just let an almost complete stranger take his kid on a trip through a zombie filled apocalyptic wasteland!) to snag the pic, as well as crib for the newborn, while Rick stays with Morgan and waits for him to wake up. During the side trip Michonne and Carl bond a little bit and by the end of the episode, Carl recommends to Rick that they should allow Michonne to stay with them.
Morgan holds one final lesson for Rick and this is that he needs to be a leader and make the hard decisions that no one else is willing to or people will end up getting killed. Morgan failed as a leader to Duane. Morgan recognized that not killing his zombie wife, meant that she would be a continuing threat to him and his son. Again, emotion got the better of him and because he failed to make the hard decision, Duane is dead as a result. Rick also realizes that he has not only been failing the people at the prison as a leader, but he’s also failed as a leader to Morgan too. Morgan tells him that it took him a while to finally turn on Rick’s radio, but when he finally did, Rick never responded. He followed Rick’s instructions, but Rick wasn’t there to hold up his end of the bargain. In Rick’s defense, he has been through some serious shit lately, so he probably deserves a little slack for not answering. If only Morgan had asked for help sooner though, maybe Rick would have still been there. Rick realizes that if he doesn’t step up, take control of the situation at the prison and make things secure for everyone in his care, then there will be fatal consequences.
Even though the action this week took place apart from the ongoing storyline of the battle with Woodbury, this episode was completely necessary towards the goal of getting rid of Crazy Rick. Rick has seen what can happen if he doesn’t start leading and taking responsibility and hopefully that means we’ve seen the last Rick/Ghost Lori makeout session. There’s a huge war brewing with the Governor and thankfully this episode has helped put Rick in the proper mindset to lead his people and possibly even come out on the winning end of the fracas. Next week it looks like we get back to the main action with a face to face meeting between Rick and the Governor with Andrea moderating! Check back here the morning after for another Zombie Round-Up!
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Posted on March 4, 2013, in Geekology, Reviews, TV, Zombie Round-Up and tagged AMC TV, Carl Grimes, Comics, Geeks, Michonne, nerds, Rick Grimes, The Walking Dead, TV, Zombies. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.